Dubai / Emirates Business
The Global Financial Markets Forum organized by National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) kicked off in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday. Several
national and international policy makers, asset managers, sovereign wealth funds and bankers talked about regional and global financial trends, especially in the banking and capital markets sector.
Speaking at the event, HE Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan,
Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, discussed the increasing importance of knowledge to the future of the UAE, as the country seeks to become a major regional hub in the global economy. “Our cultures, whatever their distinctive characteristics are, must create,
produce, transfer, adapt, and localise knowledge if they are to flourish,” he said.
Creating a knowledge-based economy and society were the primary goals of the UAE’s late founder Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and
remain the fundamental goals of the country’s present leadership, he said.
In an interconnected world, it is vital that individuals and institutions work together and embrace knowledge to achieve success. He lauded Abu Dhabi’s institutions and
economic plan 2030 that seeks to achieve a socially cohesive and economically sustainable community, with knowledge at its core.
In his speech, HE Nasser Ahmed Al Sowaidi, Chairman of NBAD and
Etihad Rail, emphasised the UAE’s position as a vital finance, trade and logistics hub in a changing geopolitical and economic environment. The country continues to “act as a bridge between some of the fastest growing and most exciting markets from the West of Africa through the Middle East to the farthest reaches in Asia,” he said. He pointed out that the UAE’s long-term investment strategy, financial depth and economic diversity are key to navigating through the current period of low oil prices. While the UAE wasn’t immune to fluctuations in oil prices, it was no longer
“enslaved” to them, he added.
Al Sowaidi further stressed on the crucial role financial institutions play in today’s changing economic environment. Banks, such as NBAD, ought to continue advancing the UAE’s position in international capital markets, preserve liquidity in the domestic market, and extend their support to local businesses and people, he said.